What to Expect from Early Learning Child Care
There are several distinct stages of formal education starting with early learning child care and culminating in tertiary education.
Each stage has its own unique pedagogy and methodology that is followed by the teachers.
Even within each stage there are mini stages that the students pass through. Within early learning for example there is infant stimulation, child care, kindergarten, preschool and the prep year.
It used to be quite common that grade one of primary school would be the first formal education that a child would experience.
Nowadays most children experience some kind of formal early learning child care or classes long before grade one.
This experience may come in the form of child care from infancy or kindergarten later on.
Early Learning Child Care- Key Areas
Early learning child care is distinct from other stages of education, and there is sometimes a perception that it is merely finger painting and playing dress ups.
In fact, the early years of education is an integral part of formal education and sets the tone for the rest of your child´s school life.
There are several key areas that are taught during the early years and mastering them is essential if your child is to do well academically in the future.
Among the most important learning skills taught in early years child care are:
• Visual discrimination and perception – this is the ability to visually distinguish between colours, shapes, size and appearance. Without strong visual perception your child will have trouble learning to read and write.
• Auditory perception – this is the ability to hear differences and similarities. Developing strong audio perception and listening skills is essential in order to be able to follow teacher instruction.
• Fine motor skills – fine motor skills are needed in order to control small muscle movements in the body. These are required for drawing, writing, cutting and making things. Obviously children need strong abilities here in order to write and present school work in the future. Fine motor skills need to be specifically taught and practiced over and over. They tend to take longer to develop than gross motor skills.
• Problem solving skills – In order to be able to solve problems, children need to develop an ability to make connections, think abstractly, solve puzzles and think about their own thinking (metacognition).
As you can see just these four skills are highly important for the future academic success of your child.
For further reading about the key areas of early learning child care visit – http://www.deewr.gov.au/earlychildhood/policy_agenda/quality/pages/earlyyearslearningframework.aspx